The way we work has changed immeasurably over the last couple of days, with the Covid-19 pandemic having forced many to work remotely rather than from the traditional office setting. That technology has enabled this to be carried off effectively and with little to no impact on productivity is not in doubt.

Home offices suddenly became a requirement where they did not already exist, and the demand for certain evolving tech and software rose beyond levels seen before. What, then, are the tech trends that have sprung from this change in attitude to how we work, and how will they shape businesses in 2022? That’s what we’re looking at in the article that follows, so we’ll get started right now. 

Booking and Scheduling Apps

Any business that has a requirement for regular booking and scheduling will be wise to take a look at this online appointment calendar tool, which is proving highly effective. Many types of businesses – especially smaller ones – will benefit greatly from this type of tool, as it is both time and cost-saving too. Think of businesses that work on a one-to-one basis – either in person or over a video link (more of which later), and that’s the type of business we are talking about. 

Accountants and lawyers, for example, or tutors and personal trainers are good examples. Others could be cafes and restaurants, hotels and guest houses, any type of business that takes bookings. The tool allows clients to access a cloud-based calendar on which they can pick the space that is convenient to them, and both parties are issued a notification. The old style of the diary is no longer needed, which brings us to the next point. 

Paperless Office Becomes Reality

The idea of a paperless office is not a new concept, but it would seem that sole traders and smaller businesses are finally recognizing the benefits of moving to an entirely digital office setup. There are a few reasons to need paper copies of invoices; for example, there are plenty of apps and tools that enable hard copies to be kept in online files – in the cloud for less use of storage space – and purchase documents and orders can be sent digitally. It’s time-saving, cost-effective, and also eco-friendly, so you can use the latter as a promotional point in your marketing material. 

Remote Working Tools

There are many who will tell you that remote working is the future for all but a role that necessitates one to be in a specific place – machine operators, for example – yet others are not convinced. However, remote working tools are among the most popular software packages and digital apps as the added versatility to a role. 

Take the role of a receptionist; telephony apps are big in the remote working world and can change the way an office is run and staffed, giving even the receptionist role a position away from the factory or office. Much in the way of digital technology is aimed at helping people work from elsewhere other than headquarters, so it is certainly worth looking at the various different remote working tools that can be bought off the shelf. There is one such that has become very popular – indeed essential for many roles – and that is our next subject. 

Video Conferencing

Another technology that is far from new is that of video conferencing tools. Previously popular for holding conferences across many people in remote places, these tools have now become more personalized and are often used for one-to-one consultations. The business could be a law firm or an accountant, a medical or personal consultant, a personal trainer, and these are very popular with tutors who hold online courses both for single persons and group sessions.

The likes of Zoom – one of the more popular options – are surprisingly effective and efficient, and the booking tool we mentioned earlier has its own video system built-in, adding greatly to its appeal with small businesses. During the pandemic, even doctors were using video for consultations where face-to-face appointments were not possible. If you have a team working remotely, this is one area you need to look at very closely if you are to achieve the best level of productivity.

Automated Marketing

Even the smallest and newest business needs to indulge in marketing, and the way tech is changing is among the most impressive developments in the business world. Email and SMS messages, for example, can be automated to be sent to certain demographic groups using clever software and apps. They can also be triggered to send a personal message to a visitor to a site or online store based on customer behavior. 

For example, a visitor logs into your store and spends a lot of time on one page without purchasing. A message can be automated to pop up after a set time asking if you can help or perhaps offering them an incentive to buy in the next few minutes. This sort of powerful marketing tool is a proven way of improving ROI and growing your brand awareness. 

The above are not all of the suggestions we could have come up with but are those that are being touted as the trend-setters in the world of commerce right now. We recommend you look in particular at the booking apps, which will make any business’s life a lot easier and save you money in the process.